Welcome to Japan
Japan’s culture is strikingly original compared to the rest of the world making this far eastern part of Asia an enduringly intriguing and tantalising destination. Our tour begins in Osaka and Kyoto, and then takes us through Japan’s heartland to Mount Fuji and concludes in Tokyo. Balancing modernism with respectful tradition, vibrant metropoles and breath-taking countryside, Japan is a country of contrasts. World famous cuisine, spectacular history and an incredibly welcoming culture await. Our trip perfectly encompasses Japan’s mesmerising spring blossom and the country will be awash with stunning powder pink cherry blossom. The nation is intimately attached to the blossom and it has deep meaning behind it, it is truly a wonderful time to be in Japan to share in this beautiful and symbolic natural phenomenon.
- Discover Japanese high culture in Kyoto
- Try your hand at making traditional Japanese Sushi
- Experience Japan during it's world-famous spring blossom
- Visit Japan’s legendary Mount Fuji
- Explore Japan's modern metropolis of Tokyo
Dates & Prices
The prices shown below include return flights from a specified UK airport. If you are travelling from outside of the UK, please .
March 28 - April 10, 2018 (14 days)
Standard Blind Price: £4399 Contact us for availability
Discounted Sighted Price: £2699 Contact us for availability
The prices shown below are for non-UK travellers and do not include return flights and transfers. If you are travelling from within the UK, please .
Standard Blind Price: 3599 GBP Contact us for availability
Discounted Sighted Price: 2049 GBP Contact us for availability
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- Flights and transfers from the UK (UK prices only)
- 4 nights accommodation at Hotel Plaza Osaka in Osaka
- 1 night accommodation at Nagoya Castle Plaza Hotel in Nagoya
- 2 nights accommodation at Takayama Ryu Resort Hotel in Takayama
- 1 night accommodation at Motosu View Hotel in Motosu
- 2 nights accommodation at Sunshine City Prince Hotel in Tokyo
- All breakfasts
- Seven lunches
- Three dinners
- Specified excursions
- Services of a local guide
- Services of a Traveleyes tour manager
- Kyoto city tour
- Nara Deer park and Sushi making
- Nagoya city tour
- Takayama traditional countryside tour
- Matsumoto Castle, markets and wasabi
- Mount Fuji and Lake Ashi Cruise
- Tokyo city tour
- Hiroshima (Optional) £315
- Nikko (Optional) £140
Below is the itinerary for the holiday. Please click each day for more information.
Wednesday 28th March
We will meet at the airport at 4.35pm to fly to Japan.
Thursday 29th March
We arrive in Osaka early this afternoon where we’ll transfer to our hotel and acclimatise to this very different world.
Overnight in Osaka.
Friday 30th March
Today our Japanese discovery commences with a visit to Kiyomizu and Kinkakuji in Kyoto. Kyoto represents quintessential Japan where tradition has endured. Kiyomizu is a Buddhist temple meaning “Pure Water Temple” and is one of Japan’s most celebrated religious sites. Founded in 780AD, the temple is located on a wooded hill east of Kyoto next to the Otowa Waterfall. The waterfall is divided into three separate streams as it enters the temple complex, which visitors drink from using cups attached to long poles. Each stream is said to provide a different trait, longevity, success at school and a fortunate love life – but to drink from all three is considered greedy. The various temples and halls of the temple complex are surrounded by gorgeous views of cherry and blossom trees.
We next discover Kinkakuji, a golden pavilion in northern Kyoto where Zen Buddhism is practised. It is famed for its differing architectural styles and rich adornment of gold leaf, typical of wealthy Kyoto residents of ages past.
Breakfast and lunch included. Overnight in Osaka.
Saturday 31st March
Our adventure continues with visits to Todaji Temple, Nara Deer Park and sushi making. We’ll transfer to Nara, one of Japan’s former capitals. We’ll visit the Todaji Temple which has the distinction of being the largest wooden structure in the world. Also of great renown is the local deer park where numerous sacred deer roam freely in their natural surroundings. Following this natural spectacle, we’ll try our hand at sushi making. This food is heavily associated with Japan and consists of cooked rice combined with raw seafood, vegetables and tropical fruits. Whilst preparing these specialist dishes we’ll learn about typical Japanese culture before tucking in to our very own creations.
Breakfast and lunch included. Overnight in Osaka.
Sunday 1st April
Today can be enjoyed at leisure in Osaka, or alternatively you may wish to join our optional excursion to Hiroshima.
Osaka is Japan’s third largest city and known as being more down-to-earth than trendy Tokyo and traditional Kyoto. Amongst a bustling street life one can find castles and futuristic urban scenery.
The trip to Hiroshima will include a visit to Itsukushima Shrine, with its famed “floating” Japanese torii gate. At high tide, both the torii and shrine seem to float magically upon the surface of the sea. UNESCO designated the Itsukushima Shrine a World Heritage site in 1996. We visit the Peace Memorial Museum set in the large park of the same name. This offers a powerful and moving reminder of the devastating destruction caused by the atomic bomb dropped upon Hiroshima on August 6, 1945. Not only does this poignant place serve to remember the victims of that explosion, it also stands as a symbol for the promotion of world peace.
Please note, the optional excursion to Hiroshima is a public tour. The journey from Osaka to Hiroshima is approximately 3 hours each way.
Breakfast included. Overnight in Osaka.
Monday 2nd April
We say farewell to Osaka today as we journey to Nagoya. Along our route we shall visit Fushimi Shrine, Lake Biwa and Nagoya Sakae. Our tour to Fishimi Shrine is one of Japan’s most intriguing points of interest known for being the principle shrine of Inari, the patron of business and commerce. An endless arcade of wooden red gates and stone fox statues line the path into the wooded mountain creating a beautiful and ethereal atmosphere.
We’ll continue to Lake Biwa, the largest freshwater lake in Japan that holds a special place in Japanese history, frequently appearing in poetry and accounts of war. We’ll conclude our day in Nagoya, Japan’s fourth most prosperous city and home to Toyota. Nagoya Sakae is the city’s downtown featuring vibrant restaurants and is the perfect opportunity to do a bit of shopping.
Breakfast and lunch included. Overnight in Nagoya.
Tuesday 3rd April
Waking up in Nagoya we shall continue to Takayama paying visits to Shirakawa Go, Takayama Jinya and Sanmachi Suji along our way. Shirakawa Go is a UNESCO world heritage site, famed for traditional Gassho-zukuri farmhouses which can be 250 years old and feature steeply thatched roofs. Located in the Shogawa River Valley, the remote mountainous scenery forms a quintessentially Japanese backdrop to historic rural life and traditional simplicity.
Takayama is a picturesque town set amid hills known as the “Japanese Alps”. Of particular renown is Kamisannomachi Street which is lined by beautifully preserved traditional wooden houses, the street is located in Sanmachi Suji, an area of Takayama that has retained its unique heritage and features many top restaurants and quaint shops. We shall also visit Takayama Jinya which is an old government building providing an intriguing insight into Japan’s political past and unique traditional architecture. Once we’re settled into our accommodation we shall enjoy our dinner together as a group.
Breakfast, lunch and dinner included. Overnight in Takayama.
Wednesday 4th April
Today will be a day at leisure to relax in our stunning and traditional Japanese spa resort. Nestled in woodland in the ”Japanese Alps” outside of Takayama we will have the opportunity to use the resort’s hot mineral spa. The Alkalin water is extremely therapeutic and softens the skin; while we wallow in the warm water we will also be surrounded by trees in the height of their spring blossom. The resort provides a truly serene and authentically Japanese experience!
For dinner, we’ll enjoy a special set menu of typical Japanese dishes in our traditional yukata robes.
Breakfast and dinner included. Overnight in Takayama.
Thursday 5th April
We’ll enjoy this morning with a visit to the local market, before heading to Matsumoto Castle, and Daio Wasabi Farm before heading to Lake Saiko. Takayama’s morning market is famous for its local crafts, farm produce and delicious ready-to-eat food.
Our tour of discovery continues to Matsumoto Castle, one of the finest and best preserved castles in Japan. This impressive structure was built more than 400 years ago and remains complete with its elegant black and white exterior, three turrets and moat. The castle contains a fascinating collection of Japanese medieval weapons. From Matsumoto we’ll visit the Daio Wasabi Farm in rural Azumino. Wasabi is a Japanese delicacy that is famously difficult to cultivate. We’ll learn about the process and see how a network of small streams of clear pure water is required for the wasabi plants to prosper. The farm has many picturesque paths which we’ll explore and a central shrine to Daio, a local hero.
This evening we’ll conclude our day in Lake Saiko, one of Mount Fuji’s Five Lakes. As we arrive and get settled we shall enjoy dinner as a group.
Breakfast, lunch and dinner included. Overnight in Lake Saiko.
Friday 6th April
Today we shall discover Mount Fuji before continuing to Oshino Hakkai and then take a relaxing cruise on Lake Ashi. We then transfer to Japan’s capital, Tokyo.
Mount Fuji is Japan’s highest mountain and has been worshipped as a sacred site for many centuries. Our day of tranquillity continues as we visit Oshino Hakkai, a town famed for its eight springs of pristine clear water that is said to flush away impurities and home to thriving koi fish. We then take to the water ourselves as we board a cruise boat for a serene sail in Lake Ashi. Surrounded by tree-filled mountains on either side this is an incredibly picturesque journey in the shadow of one of the most recognisable mountains in the world.
Our day will conclude in Tokyo, where we’ll settle into Japan’s capital city.
Breakfast and lunch included. Overnight in Tokyo.
Saturday 7th April
Our tour of Tokyo commences with a visit to Asakusa Temple, Nakamise and the Imperial Palace. Asakusa Temple is one of Tokyo’s most colourful and popular temples; originally founded in 628AD, it is also the city’s oldest. We’ll then visit Nakamise, a shopping street that has now been selling traditional wares, souvenirs and snacks for centuries to the temple’s visitors. Our tour of Tokyo concludes with a visit to the Imperial Palace, which is still home to Japan’s revered imperial family. This monumental site has been central to recent Japanese history and the conflict between ruling shoguns and the sacred emperors.
This afternoon will be free to enjoy at leisure. Whether exploring more of Tokyo’s unique traditional sites or venturing into the ultra-modern districts, fuelled by the latest technologies that Japan is now renowned for, Tokyo has a lot to offer adventurous travellers.
Breakfast and lunch included. Overnight in Tokyo.
Sunday 8th April
We’ll enjoy a day at leisure in Tokyo today. Alternatively, you may wish to join our optional excursion to Nikko.
Nikko is located inland north of Tokyo and enshrines the glories of the Edo period between 1600 and 1868. The tour will begin with a visit to the Toshogu Shrine, decorated with brilliant colours, lavish gold, silver and wooden carvings. We’ll also go to Lake Chuzenji, famed for its beautiful shoreline, especially during Spring when the trees erupt in colour. Here, we’ll find the Kegon Waterfall that drops from a towering 97 metre height, becoming one of Japan’s most photographed sites.
Please note the tour to Nikko is a public tour. The journey from Tokyo is approximately 2 hours each way.
Breakfast included. Overnight in Tokyo.
Monday 9th April
Today will be a free day to explore Tokyo at our own pace and squeeze in a few more highlights of the fascinating bustling beating heart of Japan. This evening we will prepare for our departure and transfer from the hotel to the airport.
Breakfast included. Overnight in flight.
Tuesday 10th April
Today we finish our return journey home.